Religious Marriages

If you're forming a civil partnership you cannot have a religious ceremony.  Please see https://www.gloucestershireregistrationservice.co.uk/your-ceremony/civil-partnerships/  if you are interested in forming a civil partnership. 

Religious marriage in Gloucestershire

This page has information for couples getting married in a religious ceremony in Gloucestershire.

It also has guidance for Clergy and Authorised Persons at religious buildings where marriages take place.

 

Information for couples

Before you get married - There are certain things that must happen before a wedding to ensure the marriage complies with the law.  If you are planning a marriage in a religious building you should first seek the agreement of the minister or other person in charge of marriages before making any other arrangements.  Please check with them directly when arranging your marriage ceremony that the building is licensed for marriages as well as for worship.

 

Marrying in the Church of England

If you are marrying in the Church of England, you should contact the vicar of the parish where you wish to be married.  They will be able to advise you of the process and costs involved.  The vicar will usually arrange to have banns read - you won’t need to arrange banns until about four months before your wedding date, but check with the church. Please see for those marrying in Church of England. In certain circumstances, you may need to follow a different procedure – the vicar will be able to advise you if this is the case.  If you are subject to immigration control, you will need to give notice of intention to marry instead.  You can find out more about getting married in the Church of England at www.yourchurchwedding.org

 

Marrying in a religious ceremony other than the Church of England

If you are having any other religious ceremony, the religious building in question must normally be in the registration district where you or your partner live or be your usual place of worship.

You must both sign a legal statement at a register office to say you intend to get married. This is known as ‘giving notice’.  You must give notice at least 29 days before your ceremony, and you can give notice up to a year before you plan to marry.  Please see for those marrying in religious buildings.  If you live in Gloucestershire, please contact us on 01452 425060 (option 3) to book an appointment to give notice and so that we can explain the documents you will need to provide.  Please contact us at an early stage if you plan to marry in Gloucestershire but neither of you lives here, as the requirements can be complex.  You may need to ‘establish residence’ (ie. stay here for 8 consecutive nights immediately before giving notice) in order to have a religious marriage in the county.  If you are travelling from abroad to establish residence so that you can attend your notice appointment, or if you are unsure as to what this means, or what documents you will need to provide, please contact us well in advance to check that you will be able to fulfil these requirements.

After 29 days, the register office in the district in which the marriage is going to take place will issue a schedule, which is the authorisation for the marriage to go ahead.  You must then hold your ceremony within 12 months of the date of giving notice. 

Most religious buildings licensed for marriages have an authorised person to complete the marriage schedule, so a registrar does not need to attend.  A few, however, do not, so if you are getting married in a religious building, check with them whether they have an authorised person. If they don’t, please contact us on 01452 425060 (option 3) as far in advance as possible to book a registrar to attend on the day*.  If a registrar is attending, the registrar will bring your schedule to the ceremony and return it to the register office afterwards. Otherwise, you must give the schedule to the person who is going to conduct the marriage ceremony.  It is the authorised person’s responsibility to return the schedule to the register office after the ceremony so that the marriage can be registered.  *If a registrar is attending your ceremony the fee for your certificate is already included in the amount you have paid Gloucestershire Registration, you will therefore not need to apply separately for this to be supplied to you.

 

The marriage schedule or marriage document

A marriage schedule or marriage document will include the details of each person getting married.  You can also record your parents’ details in the marriage registration. There is now provision to include details of step-parents.  You will be encouraged to provide this information when you give notice or when providing your details to the vicar at the church. However, you can provide the information either prior to or on the day of your marriage. 

You must check the information recorded on the schedule or marriage document and ask for any details that are incorrect, incomplete or out of date to be amended before you sign it.  You and your witnesses will sign the marriage schedule or marriage document at the ceremony.

If an error is noticed after the marriage is registered, you will have to apply for a correction and provide documentary evidence of the correct information.  The fee to apply for a correction is £90.00.  For further information, see https://www.gov.uk/correct-marriage-registration

 

After the marriage ceremony

Unless a registrar attends to register your marriage, your signed marriage schedule or document will be returned by the vicar, minister or authorised person to the register office.  Your marriage details will be entered into the register within 7 days of your signed marriage schedule or document being received at the register office.  After that, you can order and pay for your marriage certificate, which will be sent to you by post.  Marriage certificates can be ordered online at a cost of £11.00 each for dispatch within 7 calendar days, providing your marriage schedule or document has been received at the register office.  If you married in Gloucestershire, please visit https://www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/births-marriages-deaths-and-civil-partnerships/order-certificates/ to order marriage certificates and for information about our express certificate service.

If you married outside Gloucestershire, contact your local register office to find out how to get your marriage certificate and how long it will take.

 

Information for Clergy and Authorised Persons

Marriage schedules and marriage documents - Please contact us by email clergyqueries@gloucestershire.gov.uk if you need advice on preparing a marriage document or advice on amending a marriage document or marriage schedule.

Couples must be asked to check the particulars before signing their marriage schedule or marriage document and should be told of the complexity and £90 fee for applying for a correction at a later date. Please refer to section 4.18-4.19 of the Guidebook for the Clergy or sections 4.1-4.2 of the Guide for Authorised Persons.  Further details are at https://www.gov.uk/correct-marriage-registration

After the marriage has been celebrated, you are responsible for returning the signed marriage document or schedule to the Registration Service, so that the marriage can be registered and the couple can apply for their marriage certificate.  However, with the couple's consent, you may arrange for another person to return it, for example, a family member or friend of the newly married couple, if this is what the couple would like. 

All signed schedules/marriage documents should be posted or delivered as soon as possible, and within 21 days in all instances, to:

Registrar of Marriages

Gloucestershire Register Office

St George’s Road

Cheltenham

GL50 3EW

 

Please remember to affix the correct postage if you are posting the schedule or marriage document.  Without the correct postage, Royal Mail will refuse to deliver the item, which delays the registration of the couple’s marriage.  The schedule or marriage document can be folded to fit into a standard sized envelope, but if you are posting it unfolded in an A4 envelope, please remember that this will need a ‘Large Letter’ stamp.  We are unable to issue marriage certificates until the signed marriage document or schedule has been returned to us and the marriage has been registered.

Couples should be told to apply for marriage certificates online at www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/births-marriages-deaths-and-civil-partnerships/order-certificates/   Each marriage certificate costs £11.00 and will be dispatched within 7 calendar days, providing we have received the couple’s schedule or marriage document.  Certificates will be sent via Royal Mail 2nd class delivery service.  An express service is also available: please refer couples to our website for details.  

 

A leaflet is available for you to print off and give to couples to tell them how to obtain a marriage certificate.   Please see for those marrying in Church of England or for those marrying in religious buildings.

 

Help us improve Celebrate with us

Don’t include personal or financial information like your National Insurance number or credit card details.